On behalf of the State of Washington and its wineries and growers, the international mission of the Washington State Wine Commission is to develop new and existing markets and raise awareness and demand for Washington State wine through marketing, communication, education, and winery participation.
Overview of the International Marketing Program
Wines produced in Washington have been exported to select foreign markets since 1986. Past market development activities have been organized through a broad agricultural coalition that included individual state Departments of Agriculture, the Oregon Wine Advisory Board/Oregon Wine Board, the Washington State Wine Commission, and the Western United States Agricultural Trade Association (WUSATA).
In order to focus international market development efforts more specifically on wines produced in the Pacific Northwest, the Washington State Wine Commission, Oregon Wine Board and Idaho Wine Commission were brought together under one umbrella, the Northwest Wine Coalition. Our long-term partners at Bryant Christie, Inc. work in concert with the Northwest Wine Coalition on strategy, application for grants, compliance, that are leveraged to establish the region as a producer of first-class premium wines to international audiences.
Successful export market development programs organized and developed by the Northwest Wine Coalition have included participation in international wine exhibitions, wine tastings, restaurant promotions, media and trade visits to the Northwest production regions, partial funding of features in major trade and consumer publications, technical seminars on Northwest winemaking and grape growing techniques, cooperative promotions with the wine trade in targeted markets, and reverse trade missions.
International Strategic Plan
Funding for market development activities is awarded to the Northwest Wine Coalition by the Foreign Agricultural Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (FAS-USDA) and Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) in the form of grants. These grants include Market Access Program (MAP), Specialty Crop Block Grant (SCBG), Agricultural Trade Promotion Program (ATP), Global Broad-Based Initiative (GBI), and Emerging Markets Program (EMP).
Key Performance Metrics
International marketing participation has grown significantly over the last five years. The number of participating Washington wineries has increased by nearly 30%. In 2021, 32 Washington wineries exported wine to more than 60 countries leading to more than $47M in sales and a 5-Year compound annual growth rate of 8.8% (volume). The top ten markets represent more than 85% of export sales:
Focus Markets & Export Guides:
Every year, we participate in the biggest wine events around world, and love having our wineries and winemakers join us so they can tell, in person and for themselves, the story of Washington Wine. Below is a link to our annual calendar, and two featured programs we participate in.
2024 Calendar of Events
Following are two of the largest global wine conferences that WA Wine participates in each year:
ProWein – March 2024:
ProWein is the world’s biggest and most relevant trade conference for wine and spirits. In 2019 there were over 6,900 exhibitors from 64 countries with 61,500 visitors from 143 nations. For 25 years, the 3-day conference has been the must-attend global industry conference.
VinExpo Hong Kong – May 2024
For many years now, global consumption of wine and spirits has been driven by the Asian market. With its positive business environment, Hong Kong has emerged as a key location for networking in the industry and a strategic trading platform. In 2019, there were over 1,400 exhibitors from 33 countries with 17,000 visitors from 67 countries. The three days of the show will be punctuated by meetings, innovative ideas and networking opportunities between importers, sommeliers and producers from all over the world.
Opportunities to participate are included in the WSWC’s monthly newsletters. For any and all inquiries, from Washington wineries to importers, please contact Kate Salisbury, International Marketing & Events Coordinator, firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also reference the below helpful links:
- Western United States Agricultural Trade Association
- FAS/USDA Home Page
- Perdiem Rates Overview
- U.S. Department of State Foreign Per Diem Rates
- Foreign Currency Conversion
- U.S. State Department Travel Alerts
Through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), the Washington State Wine Commission receives Market Access Program (MAP) funding to promote Washington wine in international markets.